New Building Announced for Columbia University School of Nursing

NEW YORK, NY – Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) announced plans today to build a new home for the Columbia University School of Nursing, one of the oldest nursing schools in the nation. The seven-story building will be located on existing Columbia property at the corner of W. 168th Street and Audubon Avenue, at the east end of the CUMC campus. Construction is expected to begin in late 2014.

 "Columbia's mission of teaching and research, patient care and public service all come together so vitally in our School of Nursing," said Columbia President Lee C. Bollinger. "This new state-of-the-art facility for the school is another in a series of important steps forward not only for Columbia University Medical Center's home campus in Washington Heights, but for the university as a whole as well as for our neighbors in Northern Manhattan."

"Future leaders in nursing require technology and facilities that enable them to learn and master the skills that are needed every day in clinical practice and research. The new building, along with the new Medical and Graduate Education building already under construction, demonstrate how Columbia University Medical Center will continue to be at the forefront of health and medical training and research in the 21st century," said Lee Goldman, MD, Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine and Executive Vice President for Health and Biomedical Sciences.

In addition to the Columbia University School of Nursing and College of Physicians & Surgeons, the medical center includes the Mailman School of Public Health and the College of Dental Medicine.

The new building, by architecture firm CO|FXFOWLE, is designed to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas that characterizes the school of nursing. The interior of the 68,000-square-foot building will provide 65 percent more space than the school’s current location and will feature a network of flexible, technologically advanced spaces that accommodate various styles of teaching and learning, as well as places for socializing and relaxation. The result will be an environment in which education, collaborative research, and clinical distinction flourish. Clinicians and nurse researchers will work in close proximity, for a mutual broadening of perspectives.

“The future of nursing and nursing education will soon have a new address,” said Bobbie Berkowitz, PhD, RN, FAAN, Dean of the Columbia University School of Nursing and Senior Vice President of the Columbia University Medical Center. “Our new building brings renewed focus to our education and research mission at a time when advanced practice nurses are playing an ever-greater role in the health-care delivery system.”

A highlight of the building will be a state-of-the art simulation center to help students master complex clinical techniques in a safe, educational environment. The simulation center, which will occupy nearly two floors, will be equipped with a variety of model health-care settings, such as a mock in-patient room, exam room, critical care unit, and an operating room. Three clinical teaching skills labs will contain a total of six beds and 14 exam tables will give students the opportunity to perfect clinical procedures on lifelike mannequins.

“Our top-tier faculty and growing student body require this additional, technologically advanced space to keep pace with the demands of an intensive program of clinical education and research,” said Kenneth Forde, MD, Chair, Columbia University Trustees, Committee on the Health Sciences.

Designed to achieve LEED Silver by the award-winning architectural firm CO|FXFOWLE, the new building also features spaces for research, a sunlit atrium lobby, a café, and a flexible event space on the top floor adjacent to a rooftop terrace where faculty, staff, and students can relax and informally exchange ideas and collaborate. The new building will provide forums for visiting scholars from around the world to interact with students and faculty.

Columbia University School of Nursing, founded in 1892, was one of the first nursing schools to offer the clinical practice doctorate, the Doctor of Nursing Practice. It also has the nation’s oldest continuous program in nurse midwifery. Archival photographs and items throughout the building will provide visual reminders of the school’s historical legacy, as well as its commitment to the future of nursing.


Columbia University Medical Center provides international leadership in basic, preclinical, and clinical research; medical and health sciences education; and patient care. The medical center trains future leaders and includes the dedicated work of many physicians, scientists, public health professionals, dentists, and nurses at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, the Mailman School of Public Health, the College of Dental Medicine, the School of Nursing, the biomedical departments of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and allied research centers and institutions. Columbia University Medical Center is home to the largest medical research enterprise in New York City and State and one of the largest faculty medical practices in the Northeast. For more information, visit or